Extra police on duty in Sheffield for end of promotion battle

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EXTRA police will be on duty in Sheffield this weekend over fears the race for promotion between United and Wednesday could escalate into violence.

Police chiefs have given the go-ahead for more officers to work on Saturday when Owls and Blades fans will learn which of the clubs have secured promotion from League One to the Championship.

Sheffield Wednesday need to beat Wycombe Wanderers at home to secure second place and automatic promotion behind champions Charlton Athletic.

But if Sheffield United better Wednesday’s result, the Blades will nab second spot.

With emotions expected to be running high on Saturday and potential for conflict between rival fans, officers will be on the look-out for signs of anyone intent on trouble.

Chief Inspector Rachel Barber said: “There will be normal policing arrangements for the Wednesday home game, but United are doing a beam back to Bramall Lane from Exeter, so there will be another 6,000 fans there.

“We will be bolstering our Saturday night operation in the city because of the potential for tension, as one set of fans will be celebrating and the other will be disappointed not to have won automatic promotion - it will bring an added dimension to Sheffield.

“We understand the passion around football and encourage both sets of fans to be supportive of the other - not to use Saturday’s results as an excuse for violence.

n Blades star honour row: Page 11.